Results tagged ‘ Blaine Neal ’

Friday the 13th?

It was a real Friday the 13th today for pitcher Blaine Neal, who likely pitched his way into the minors forever, losing the Phillies’ 2 run lead in the 9th against the Pirates.  The Phillies lost 6-5 and Neal, who has not seen action in the majors since 2005, likely will not again.  But really, that is the least of the worries for the Phils.

For the second day in a row, the Phillies could not muster any offense until the 6th inning, when it exploded into a 5 run gain.  Prior to that, it was nappy-nap time for the Phils.  Jason Donald and Ryan Howard led the mini-stampede; Donald went 2 for 5 in the game and Howard whacked a 2 run homer in the 6th.  For the most part though, the offense has been quiet; they are obviously saving it up for April.  Chris Coste, however, needs to get the monkey off his back and soon; Coste has not gotten a hit yet in grapefruit league action.

Injury News

Great news at 3rd base!  Pedro Feliz is back in action and said he is ready to go.  So, Opening Day?  No problem!  And no Friday the 13th woes here either.  As for Chase Utley, he began sliding drills today and so far, so good.  He hopes to get in a live game next week sometime.

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And in former-Phillie Pat Burrell news, Burrell took out a full-page ad in both The Philadelphia Inquirer and the Daily News today to thank the Philadelphia organization and the fans for his 9-year run.  And if you did not love Pat before, you have got to admire him now.  A very classy move; hopefully, once he decides to retire, he will return to Philadelphia and go out as a Phillie, like Mike Lieberthal did last year.  The ad is in the photo to the right; click on it to enlarge and read the whole thing.  Best of luck, Pat!

 

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World Series Hangover

The Phillies lost their Spring Training home opener today to the Blue Jays, 6-2.  This makes 2 straight losses to open the pre-season; World Series hangover perhaps?  The big boys like Ryan Howard and Raul Ibanez went 0-3, each leaving 2 men on base, and the only two runs scored were knocked in by Jimmy Rollins and Greg Dobbs who each went 1-3.  Carlos Carrasco and JA Happ began the pitching duel today, battling it out for the 5th starter position.  Both pitched two scoreless innings with only Happ giving up a hit; although Carrasco was helped out by John Mayberry in right field who used his 6’5″ frame to scale the wall and snag what was surely a home run shot.  Here is Mayberry making the catch along with another shot of him getting hit by a pitch; below that, you will see Jeremy Slayden playing a ball off the centerfield wall.

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In other great pitching news, Gary Majewski, previously of the Reds, pitched two scoreless innings as well.  But much like yesterday’s game, two other pitchers gave the game away for the Phillies; Justin Lehr gave up 2 back to back home runs in his one inning of work and Blaine Neal gave up 4 runs in only 2/3 of an inning.

More encouraging was the play of rookie Mayberry and Jason Ellison, a 6-year veteran previously with the Rangers.  Ellison got a hit in the 3rd inning and proceeded to steal second base:

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Also on the ball today was 3rd baseman Mike Cervenak, who helped save a hit by making a great play on a ball that took a nasty short hop.  Cervenak also drew a walk in his only at-bat.  Here he is making the catch and also trying to break up a double play that Jeremy Slayden hit into:

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Although the Phillies have dropped the first two games, keep in mind that at this point in Spring Training, less emphasis is placed on winning games and more on examining rookies and deciding who will make the final roster.  So, not to worry Phillies fans! 

In other news for the worriers, you will be happy to know that prior to the game, Chase Utley took batting practice on the field.  He took some light swings and looked like he was not too far from seeing game action.  Also before the game, Army air paratroopers parachuted into the stadium, one of them carrying the World Series flag which was then hung in the stadium.  And that is our Picture of the Day:
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